Laylatul Qadr 2023: when is Night of Power in Ramadan, what dua do you say, what surah is it and how to pray

Laylatul Qadr, meaning night of power, is an important date in the Islamic month of Ramadan

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The Islamic holy month Ramadan began on 23 March 2023 which saw millions of Muslims around the world begin to dry fast during sunlight hours, for the following 30 days. But during this month there is a holy night, known as Laylatul Qadr - also called the Night of Power.

According to scripture, on this night the Quran was revealed to Prophet Muhammad. So when is Laylatul Qadr, and what are the signs, surahs and traditions to know?

What is Laylatul Qadr? 

Laylatul Qadr, known in English as the Night of Power, the Night of Decree or the Night of Destiny, is one of the holiest days in the holy month. This Night of Power is when Muslims believe the Quran was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad, however, the exact date for this is unknown. It is observed during one of the last ten days of the month, most typically on the odd nights, from 21 Ramadan.

Many Muslims believe during this night you will receive many blessings and receive the mercy of God in abundance. This night is better than a thousand months because, according to Muslims, praying throughout this night is rewarded equally to praying for a thousand months - which is just over 83 years i.e., a lifetime. As a result, many Muslims spend this night in prayer.

Difference between Islamic Sects 

Shia Islam

Shia Muslims believe Laylatul Qadr occurs in the last 10 days of Ramadan but mostly on 19, 21, and 23 Ramadan - with the 23 being the most important. According to Shia beliefs, 19 Ramadan coincides with the night Ali ibn Abi Talib, the fourth Rashidun Caliph and first Shia Imam, was attacked in the Great Mosque of Kufa and died later of his wounds on 21 Ramadan.

Shia Muslims believe Ali had insight and intimacy with God and have concluded Laylatul Qadr therefore falls after his death on 23 Ramadan.

Muslim men pray in Kuwait City's Grand Mosque just before daybreak, during Laylat al-Qadr or Night of Destiny, during the holy month of RamadanMuslim men pray in Kuwait City's Grand Mosque just before daybreak, during Laylat al-Qadr or Night of Destiny, during the holy month of Ramadan
Muslim men pray in Kuwait City's Grand Mosque just before daybreak, during Laylat al-Qadr or Night of Destiny, during the holy month of Ramadan

Sunni Islam

Sunni Muslims believe God alone answers humanity’s supplications and Muslims should actively seek God’s forgiveness and engage in acts of worship on this night. Laylat al-Qadr is found to be on the last 5 odd nights of Ramadan (21st, 23rd, 25th, 27th or 29th).

Many cultures celebrate it on the 27th, but certain scholars state if a Friday night coincides with an odd-numbered night, it is likely to be the one. In the Islamic year 1444, which in the Gregorian calendar is 2023, these nights fall on 11 April, 13 April, 15 April, 17 April, or 19 April 2023.

What are the signs and surahs associated with Laylatul Qadr?

Although the date of Laylatul Qadr is not known, it is strongly suspected to fall on an odd night in the final ten days of Ramadan. Culturally, some people also believe Laylatul Qadr falls on a peaceful night. In the Quran, the 97th chapter (surah) is Al Qadr, meaning power or fate. The surah is five verses long and celebrates the night of the first revelation of what would later become the Quran.

The official Islamic teaching is that Prophet Muhammad received the revelations forming the Quran for the next 23 years of his life, up until the time of his death. Al-Qadr is read as it pertains to the night itself, and some people opt to recite this surah up to 100 times.

What Duas to say during Laylatul Qadr? 

Dua is another word for prayer, and there is no single way to offer a prayer to God. However, as Laylatul Qadr has an emphasis on forgiveness, many Muslims opt to pray for forgiveness and surety on this night through hour-long duas. Other people also choose this night to recite any chosen surah from the Quran after reading Al-Qadr.

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